CESNET e-infrastructure Core Running on 100 Gbps

Prague, 1 July 2013. The entire core of the CESNET national e-infrastructure is now providing the speed of 100 gigabits per second (Gbps) on all its DWDM optical lines. This positions our national research and education network among the world’s few optical infrastructures which can provide their users with this currently maximum achieved speed. Just to give an idea: the capacity of 100 Gbps allows transferring data from 20 CDs or 3 DVDs in one second. What is even more important is the potential for supporting interactive applications intended for transferring combined data, audio and video, mainly live video transfers with high resolution (so-called streaming).

Upgrading its optical network to the capacity of 100 Gbps also places CESNET among the first ranked because of the first simultaneous utilization of production 100 Gbps data transfer and photonic services on a shared optical fibre on the Prague-Brno line. The photonic services minimize transfer lag fluctuation, which is required by certain specific applications, such as remote device control, reproducible scientific experiments or accurate time or frequency transfers.

The CESNET e-infrastructure is primarily designed for the local science and research teams and the entire academic community. Czech scientists and researchers will be able to utilize the state-of-the-art capacity mainly to exchange large files, for example with CERN in Geneva within particle physics research, for interactive robotic surgery transfers that are extremely demanding in terms of bandwidth and with minimum delays, and other sophisticated tasks where top parameters are vital.

Gradual increase of the network capacity to 100 Gbps began in the first months of this year after comprehensive testing in 2012. In February 2013 the network backbone speed was boosted to 100 Gbps from the former 10 to 40 Gbps – Hradec Králové-Prague-Brno and Brno-Olomouc lines, to be more specific. This was made possible by equipping the CRS-3/16 backbone router with 100GE DWDM cards. Further DWDM lines were added later, forming the network core.

Today, the capacity of 100 Gbps is seen as characteristic of the most advanced electronic infrastructures, designed mainly for research and education and forming a vanguard of the communication technology progress. There are also six leading global research and education networks attempting to establish inter-continental communication links reaching this capacity, connecting America and Europe – Internet2 (USA), NORDUnet (Norther Europe countries), ESnet (USA Departments of Energy), SURFnet (Netherlands), CANARIE (Canada), and GÉANT (Europe). These networks have demonstrated their aim to build the first transatlantic line for the needs of international research, development and education with the speed of 100 Gbps in practice at the important TERENA Networking Conference 2013 (TNC2013), held at the beginning of June in Maastricht, Netherlands. Within the Advanced North Atlantic 100G Pilot Project (ANA-100G), 100 Gbps lines will be tested over the coming months and relating technologies, applications and services will be verified. Even now 80% of the available connection capacity for large transfers has been easily consumed by traffic generated by merely two servers on each side of the ocean.

However, not even the level of 100 Gbps is final. Development in the area of routers is now concentrating on 400-Gbps interfaces. Transmission rates up to 1 Tbps (one terabit equalling one thousand gigabits) are being developed and tested for DWDM transmission systems.

The CESNET Association was founded by Czech universities and the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic in 1996. It is engaged in research and development in information and communication technologies and builds and develops the CESNET national e-infrastructure for research and education. With its research activities and accomplishments, CESNET represents the Czech Republic in international projects, most notably the pan-European GÉANT network building project and grid projects (EGI.eu), and participates actively in their implementation.

Press release, July 1, 2013

Last change: 3.7.2013